Trump said Canada “takes advantage” of the United States and re-imposed tariffs on Canadian aluminum, adding that his decision “defends the American industry.”
UNITED STATES (Agencies) – U.S. President Donald Trump announced yesterday, Thursday, August 6, 2020, that he will again impose 10% tariffs on Canadian aluminum starting August 16, arguing that Canada is “taking advantage” of the United States “as usual” (SIC).
On the condition that Canada “does not flood our country with its exports and does not destroy all our jobs in the aluminum sector,” the U.S. government lifted tariffs, Trump said in a speech at a washing machine factory in Ohio.
But “Canadian aluminum producers broke that commitment,” he said. Trump announced his decision “to defend U.S. industry by re-imposing tariffs on Canadian aluminum. Canada is taking advantage of us, as usual,” he said.
On July 1, the new North American free-trade agreement that replaced NAFTA, took effect. The tariffs, which take effect August 16, are a response to what Washington calls a “surge” in aluminum imports from Canada last year, which “threatens to hurt domestic production” of that element.
According to the text of the presidential proclamation, Canadian aluminum imports between June 2019 and May 2020 increased 87% over the previous 12 months.
“I decided that the measures agreed with Canada are not effective enough to remedy the threat that aluminum imports from Canada pose to our national security,” Trump wrote.
In early July, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau evoked rumors that Trump might re-impose customs duties, noting that the United States does not have sufficient aluminum production capacity and needs the Canadian product for its automotive and high-tech industries.
The American Chamber of Commerce criticized the decision, which would “increase costs for local manufacturers. It also noted that “most U.S. aluminum producers” oppose the provision, which will result in reciprocal measures against U.S. exports.
Trudeau did not travel to Washington to celebrate the agreement with Trump and Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, who visit the White House last month.
On Thursday, Canada denounced as “unacceptable” the decision of U.S. President Donald Trump to re-impose 10% tariffs on Canadian aluminum and announced plans to take “countermeasures” of the same magnitude quickly.
The U.S. decision “is unjustified and unacceptable,” said Deputy Prime Minister Chrystia Freeland. “In response to U.S. tariffs, Canada intends to impose countermeasures of equal value quickly”
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